Albertsons LLC Eliminates Loyalty Card in Southwest Market

PHOENIX Albertsons stores in this market have discontinued the use of loyalty cards, the company said. The 78 Albertsons stores in this region, which are operated by Boise, Idaho-based Albertsons LLC, will instead offer Bonus Buys to highlight special deals on merchandise. The way we run our company is that our divisional presidents are given a lot of autonomy to do what they think will work in their

PHOENIX — Albertsons stores in this market have discontinued the use of loyalty cards, the company said.

The 78 Albertsons stores in this region, which are operated by Boise, Idaho-based Albertsons LLC, will instead offer “Bonus Buys” to highlight special deals on merchandise.

“The way we run our company is that our divisional presidents are given a lot of autonomy to do what they think will work in their markets,” Robert Miller, chief executive officer, Albertsons LLC, told SN.

He said Bob Colgrove, the president of the Southwest Division, made the decision to eliminate the “Preferred Card” program after customers responded well to the elimination of the card in the Denver market earlier this year.

“It's something our customers there like,” Miller said.

Other competitors in the Phoenix market, which include Bashas', Safeway and Kroger-owned Fry's, all continue to use discount cards, according to reports.

“Our objective is to give all of the customers in the marketplace the same great deals regardless of having to have a loyalty card,” said Colgrove in a prepared statement.

Albertsons was a latecomer to the loyalty-card fray and had only introduced the cards in this market in 2003.

Separately, Phoenix is one of the markets where Albertsons will continue to operate a distribution center after the company last month said it would sell its DC in Fort Worth, Texas. It also has warehouses in Florida and Colorado, and continues to operate a general merchandise DC in Oklahoma, where it has agreed to sell its stores.

Last year the chain was broken up, with stores in this market and in Colorado, Florida, Texas and other markets going to a private equity consortium operating them as Albertsons LLC, and most of the stores going to Supervalu, Minneapolis.